2009/11: Huffington Post column on importance of Worse Than War

by Thane Rosenbaum

“To the great regret of humanitarians–not to mention actual victims–genocide is both a word for mass murder and an instant conversation killer. The sheer grotesqueness of gas chambers, killing fields, death marches, ditches scattered with bones and blood, and hacked and bulleted bodies, is so grave, its gravity so unspeakably large, that the very word itself brings to mind an overwhelming sense of failed humanity.”

2009/10: New York Times Book Review of Worse Than War

Patterns of Genocide by James Traub

“Evil repels analysis. Poets from the time of Homer have sung of war, but only a monster sings of atrocities. So, too, with journalism and scholarship. We are admonished not to ascribe rational motives to Osama bin Laden or Hitler, or to their followers. To admit of motives is to reduce the moral to the psychological, and thus to the comprehensible, and thus perhaps to the acceptable. Our understanding of unspeakable acts is limited on the one hand to the irreducible moral fact of evil, and on the other to the dynamics of mob psychology — of mass lunacy.”

2009/10: New York Times Book Review

James Traub on Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s new book about genocide

“The New York Times’ Sam Tanenhaus and James Traub discuss the importance of Worse Than War” New York Times (podcast)

2009/10: Die Presse Review of Worse Than War

Niemand von uns ist bloß Zuschauer

Nach der Auseinandersetzung mit „Hitlers willigen Vollstreckern“ wagt sich Daniel Jonah Goldhagen an eine Theorie des systematischen Massenmords. „Schlimmer als Krieg“: ein Pionierprojekt – nicht frei von Widersprüchen. DE

2009/10: Tagesthemen video article with Daniel Jonah Goldhagen

1997: Zeit Online

Why a ‘Democracy Prize’ for Daniel J. Goldhagen? A Laudatio (“Warum ein ‘Demokratiepreis’ für Daniel J. Goldhagen? Eine Laudatio)

“Der Demokratiepreis, den das erste Mal Bärbel Bohley und Wolfgang Ullmann für die Bürgerrechtler der DDR entgegengenommen haben, geht an den diesjährigen Preisträger mit der folgenden Begründung: Daniel Goldhagen habe “aufgrund der Eindringlichkeit und der moralischen Kraft seiner Darstellung dem öffentlichen Bewußtsein in der Bundesrepublik wesentliche Impulse gegeben”; er habe “die Sensibilität für Hintergründe und Grenzen einer deutschen ,Normalisierung’” geschärft. Die Bezugnahme auf die rhetorische Wirkung des Buches und auf die Streitfrage der Normalisierung, die sich im Übergang zur Berliner Republik erneut stellt, läßt erkennen, was das Kuratorium der Blätter für deutsche und internationale Politik mit dieser Preisverleihung im Sinn hat – und was nicht. Es kann und will nicht in eine wissenschaftliche Kontroverse eingreifen.”

1997/01: New York Times Magazine

The Antagonist as Liberator by Amos Alon

“I WAS BROWSING THROUGH THE shelves of a large Berlin bookstore recently when an elegantly dressed woman rushed in and asked for four copies (”gift-wrapped, please”) of ”Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust,” by Daniel Jonah Goldhagen. She appeared to be a regular customer. As the saleswoman wrapped the books, the woman told her that she was buying copies for her two sons and her two married daughters. With so much idle talk after reunification of ”We are finally able to turn the page,” she said, it was proper that the ”past” was in the news again and a hot issue on all the television talk shows. This Goldhagen, she pronounced, was ”kolossal.” ”

1996/04: Charlie Rose Interview

An interview with Daniel Jonah Goldhagen

1996/04: New York Times

On My Mind;Some Ordinary Germans

A. M. Rosenthal, former Executive Editor of the New York Times, was moved by Hitler’s Willing Executioners to write: “Twice in my life I have felt that until I wrote about what I had just experienced, I would not be able to bring myself to write about anything else. The first time was in 1958, when I first visited Auschwitz.”

1996/03: New York Times

BOOKS OF THE TIMES;Was Slaughter of Jews Embraced by Germans?

“A basic question posed by students of the Holocaust has to do with the psychology of the ordinary perpetrators of the genocide against the Jews. How, some scholars have asked, did those who carried out the slaughter overcome the moral scruples it would be normal to feel when faced with the annihilation of an entire people, a far-flung people, moreover, that posed no threat to the German homeland.”